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D TE NER LEC AUT ITDU LTOO S UPRN D Y’ MT,A HE EISST CC HNE NN TAH VR EA PIT GG I R,OT A TELSN FR RIAO N WISFR I NEST D GSO V OTRE A -SCC LI ERAO H I GDH D A NNC SIA

Marie Claire (South Africa) - - CELEBRITY -

so I’m strolling through the Place Vendôme, as one does of a sum­mer day in Paris. Ev­ery­thing is beau­ti­ful in that strange dif­fused light of the city, as though you’re per­ma­nently a lit­tle tipsy on Cham­pagne and the city has taken on an In­sta­gram hue some­where be­tween X Pro II and Sierra.

‘Oh, hello,’ I say to the in­cred­i­bly fa­mil­iar woman walk­ing with her cute tod­dler and her sud­denly bristling body­guard. And im­me­di­ately I re­alise: ‘Oh, of course, this is not some­one I know from home but rather the ter­ri­bly charm­ing but now weirded-out Ali­cia Keys.’

Mor­ti­fi­ca­tion of the ‘celebrity spot­ting in Paris’ va­ri­ety en­sues. I’m like: ‘No, I am not some pe­cu­liar stalker – I in­ter­viewed you yes­ter­day.’ And she is re­as­sur­ing the body­guard with a ‘Yes, of course – South Africa.’ We smile mu­tual pained smiles and move on. Phew! Awk­ward­ness averted at the pass.

Our vis­its to Paris have co­in­cided for the launch of Dahlia Divin – the Givenchy fra­grance to which she has lent her face and fame. It strikes me that the rea­son she seemed so fa­mil­iar, strolling in the Place Vendôme, apart from the ob­vi­ous fact of her Ali­cia Keys-ness, is that she is a gen­uinely de­light­ful per­son, a fact that be­came ap­par­ent in the in­ter­view. Here is a lovely, vi­brant and com­plete woman who ap­pears re­mark­ably un­touched by the bur­dens of fame and un­tram­melled by a huge ego. In short, even dur­ing the course of a day in which she prob­a­bly an­swered the same ques­tions a hun­dred times, she was pos­sessed of ex­treme warmth and un­af­fected charm.I am now her big­gest fan. Just don’t tell her body­guard.

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